From Pat Burke: 6 Truths You Need To Hear Before You Try Another Muscle Up

While we rely on our coach to use his or her punctilious coaching eye to correct faults in our movements that we don't notice; it's also helpful to have a coach keep cues short, simple and seemingly obvious. Here are some simple rules and truths to keep in mind before you try your next muscle up:

Truth #1
"The strict muscle up is a natural progression from the pull-up and ring dip." 

The strict muscle up adds the complexity of connecting the top of the pull to the bottom of the dip. This connection is also known as the transition. This is the crux of the movement, but also serves to demonstrate your strength on the rings and should be a requirement to complete before moving to the faster and much more dynamic kipping muscle up transition. 

A takeaway from this truth is that the strict muscle up is a strict pull up plus some and a strict dip plus some. Your end range of motion in the pull of the muscle up should be significantly farther than your end range of motion when doing a simple chin over pull-up on the bar. Start practicing the "plus some" portion of the pull and push by doing strict chest to bar or chest to rings pull-ups.

Truth #2 
"The strict muscle up shouldn't be seen with any more difficulty than the strict pull-up or dip."
Similar to the pull-up and the dip, the muscle up requires proper technique, consistent training and the sheer will to make it happen. Keep it simple and effective. 

Truth #3
"The false grip is a must."

In order to transition from the top of your pull to the bottom of your dip, you must place your wrist over the top of the bottom of the rings. Similar to choking up on a baseball bat for a faster swing, the false grip will shorten the distance between your elbow and the rings by several inches giving you more leverage to transition over the rings.

Truth #4
"Inability to maintain false grip typically happens because of two reasons."

1) You lack the mobility or strength to flex your wrist to roughly 90 degrees over the top of the rings and hold your own body weight, and/or
2) The small contact area the narrow rings make with the bony portion of the wrist.

Our product, False Grips, is designed to assist in maintaining the false grip. We've made it comfortable and practical by molding it the natural shape of the hand and wrist during a proper false grip.

Truth #5
"False Grips were developed as a convenient way to increase the surface area where the wrists have contact with the rings."

Having more contact area spreads the load across the wrist and heel of the hand making the grip more bearable while reducing the likeliness of ripping the skin on your wrist. With a more comfortable grip, one that does not hurt or cause your skin to rip, you are more likely to pull harder and engage more muscles while performing the muscle up. Also, you'll find yourself training more often if you are not losing days to recovering from tears on your wrists.

Truth #6
"Transitioning from False Grips to the empty rings should not be a concern."

Transferring the mechanics learned on False Grips and utilizing the improved strength in the forearms and shoulders will only further enable you to do successive drills on the rings such as the kipping muscle up.

However, False Grips are not a crutch. Like any other piece of strength equipment, False Grips is a tool to develop strength in areas of weakness. We want to aid you in developing a strong and sturdy grip. 

Still have questions? Email 

Happy training!
~ The False Grips Team